Working out way through the September promotions list, we turn our attention to left-hander Matt Dermody of the Toronto Blue Jays.
Dermody got on my radar a few years ago because he is from Iowa and (being from Iowa myself) I like to keep track of my home state players. I put him in the 2014 edition of the Baseball Prospect Book, following his selection by the Blue Jays in the 2013 draft. Here's what I wrote at the time:
Matt Dermody, LHP, Toronto Blue Jays
Bats: L Throws: R HT: 6-5 WT: 190 DOB: July 4, 1990
Dermody was a 28th round pick last June from the University of Iowa. I have been tracking him since high school since he is a Des Moines-area kid and I saw him pitch a few times in college. He always struck me as a guy who could be successful in pro ball despite a lack of outstanding NCAA numbers. Not that he was bad in college, but it just never quite seemed to come together. At his best, Dermody has a low-90s fastball with a solid curveball and changeup. He’s always thrown strikes, has a low-effort delivery and an athletic body. Everything worked properly in the Northwest League and he’s positioned himself as a prospect to watch, someone who could be a back-end starter or a relief option. Grade C with sleeper potential.
Dermody didn't have a great 2014 season, posting a 4.67 ERA in 96 innings for Low-A Lansing in the Midwest League with a 65/36 K/BB and 113 hits allowed. His velocity was down a bit compared to college and his stats were not very good, aside from a decent walk rate. I didn't put him in the 2015 book. He moved to the bullpen in '15 and had another mediocre year with a 4.21 ERA and 98 hits allowed in 77 innings in High-A, though his K/BB was good at 62/13. I didn't put him in the '16 book either.
He's been much better this year, pitching in High-A, Double-A, and Triple-A with a combined 1.82 ERA in 54 innings, 55 hits, and a 47/8 K/BB.
The factors that got Dermody drafted back in 2013 re-emerged this season. His fastball has been a steady 90-93 and he throws strikes. He still has the change-up, a mid-80s pitch, but the curve he demonstrated in college is now more of a slider, also in the mid-80s. This is the profile of a back-end reliever but finding a useful arm in the 28th round is always a nice thing.
Here's some Iowa Hawkeyes video with some looks at Dermody back in college, similar to what I observed at the time.